The Australian Christian Lobby got JobKeeper but their revenue went up

The Australian Christian Lobby received $138,000 from the government’s JobKeeper scheme despite their income increasing during the period the support funds were on offer.

The Sydney Morning Herald has revealed that the Christian Lobby group is one of a number of industry groups, political lobbying bodies and thinktanks that claimed the payment when their revenue didn’t fall as much as needed to be in the scheme.

The scheme has come under scrutiny after an independent analysis found that at least $13billion was paid to companies that did not need it. Last week Harvey Norman repaid $6 million that it received during a period where sales were soaring. An additional $14.5 million that was paid to it’s privately owned franchisees was not returned.

As a registered charity the Australian Christian Lobby could apply for the scheme if they believed their revenue would fall by up to 30% during the Covid-19 pandemic. The opposite happened, their revue increased by 12 per cent for the 2019-20 financial year.

The ACL declined to tell the newspaper if they intended to return the funds that they didn’t need.

Managing Director Martyn Iles had previously commented on the scheme, saying that the government’s finances had been badly managed in the past.

On Facebook Iles wrtoe that the country had “bumbled into this pandemic, broke. More broke than we should have been after a decade of prosperity. We are bumbling out of this pandemic, broke. More broke than we ought to have been due to this fools’ errand of trying (and failing) to save ourselves”.

“If wisdom is storing up for the future – as modelled in the towering example of Joseph – then what have we been doing since 2008? Answer: We’ve been fools,” he said.

The lobby group employs 27 employees, 14 of whom are full-time.

OIP Staff


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